I’d first seen Nakaya Fountain Pens on Leigh Reyes’ blog posts and Instagram feeds. Sure they were pretty, but I had always thought it was a lot of money to spend on a pen, especially the “regular edition” which are the “basic” Urushi pens. I mean, they are just a glossy one colour pen right?
As more and more bloggers started posting about their love for Nakaya, I started to look more and more closely at the photos and their website. I found the Maki-E section and those pens were much more interesting to me. The workmanship looked remarkable – I am a bigfan of the detail and work that goes into the Maki-E artworks, I was astonished. But still, >US$1500 for a pen? Maybe one day, I thought.
Then came the first Dorsal Fin manufacturing pause. This was the model I had had my eye on their website and now there was no way of purchasing one. I decided it was now or never and when the other model I had my eye on – the White Roses Maki E pen – was in stock, I purchased it straight away – it was as though the planets aligned.
The pen came pretty quickly and I ordered it in a standard Broad nib that had been tuned before shipment. I was instantly in love. The detail on the white roses maki-e artwork was astonishing and the nib was pretty much perfect for what I wanted. It was smooth, a tiny bit of feedback that causes it to “sing” when I write. Just wet enough for my liking, without being an inconvenient gusher. It was pretty much perfect.
The pen is well weighted to be really comfortable for long sessions. Somehow the urushi is glossy but allows enough grip to make for a really comfortable writing experience.
The only two downsides (and these are marginal and do not bother me really at all, I am only being very picky) is that the ebonite is a little smelly, especially when you go to uncap the pen – I’ve had this pen for years now (maybe 4 or 5 years?) and I can still smell it when I open up the pen to use. This one is the worst offender out of my Ebonite pens, the others I own don’t seem to have as much of an issue and its really very minor. The other downside is that it comes with the Platinum converter, which isn’t the best. It’s a little flimsy and the piston seems to stiffen up quite easily, so it needs regular re-greasing.
Of course the price tag is a downside. If Nakayas weren’t so expensive, I would buy a lot more of them. But then, perhaps that’s a good thing because I don’t really need so many fountain pens! Whether its worth the price tag is a decision for you to make and will depend on your own situation, but I have no regrets purchasing this pen. It is one of my most used pens and I love it to bits!
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